Abington Nutrition Services LLC was founded by Richard Perlmutter, M.S. to provide nutrition labeling services for food and beverage manufacturers.
Our work is based on federal govern-ment regulations that are overseen by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Foods Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The FSIS oversees the nutrition labeling of red meat (including pork) and poulty products. These regulations describe, in a detailed manner, how nutritional information is presented on the pack-aging of food and beverage products.
Nutrition Labeling and Marketing
Even though most nutrition labeling is predetermined by federal regulations, there is some degree of choice. There is choice in how ingredients are listed, which nutrients to include, and use of claims regarding the amount of nutrients and health benefits.
These choices can profoundly influence how a product is marketed, and how the consumer can be expected to perceive the product.
Our monthly newsletter Nutrition Sense and Nutrition Nonsense often dis-cusses the interplay between nutrition labeling and marketing. (Please click the Newsletter tab to see the current and past issues.)
For example, the May, 2013 issue explains why certain nutrient claims are appearing on more products, and why others are appearing on fewer products.
The December, 2012 issue features a comparison of nutrition claims on the packaging of a popular brand of pudding – before and after the labeling was updated. The reasons for the updates are discussed.
The April, 2012 issue has an explanation on why 480mg of sodium per serving is an important threshold amount for soup labeling. The same issue discusses how the regulations allow for some flexibility in determining the serving size of various products.
It is important to understand that nutrition labeling does not stand alone. How the labeling is presented strongly impacts product marketing. In fact it is a major component of the marketing.
Three main parts
There are three main parts to nutrition labeling--the Nutrition Facts panel, the list of ingredients, and the declaration of allergens.
In addition one may add nutrient content claims such as 'low calorie' or 'excellent source of'.
To further promote beneficial characteristics one may also add health claims. Use of these is restricted to foods and beverages that meet strict criteria.
Copyright 2011 Abington Nutrition Services LLC. All rights reserved.